Touching the Void

Listed by: Bristol Old Vic

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What happens when you look death squarely in the face and how do you find the strength to crawl back towards life?

“His eyes had been full of thoughts. Pity. Pity and something else; a distance given to a wounded animal which could not be helped.”

Joe Simpson’s memoir Touching the Void, international bestseller and BAFTA-winning film sensation, charts his struggle for survival on the perilous Siula Grande mountain in the Peruvian Andes in 1985.

The heart of the story is Joe Simpson’s mental battle as he teeters on the very brink of death and despair in a crevasse from which he can’t possibly climb to safety. Also unforgettable in the story is the appalling dilemma of Simon Yates, perched on an unstable snow-cliff, battered by freezing winds and desperate to rescue the injured Simpson, who hangs from a rope below him. Knowing that they will both ultimately fall into the void, he makes the critical decision to cut the rope, forever changing the lives of both of them.

Tom Morris (The Grinning Man, War Horse, Swallows & Amazons) directs the first stage adaptation of this nail-biting adventure, bringing award-winning writer and Artistic Director of the Royal Lyceum Theatre Edinburgh David Greig (The Events, The Lorax, The Suppliant Women) back to Bristol for the first time since his college days.

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